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Paganism and the Innocent

By Judie Brown

The always-brilliant Christopher Altieri recently wrote about the state of our hedonistic society, saying, “Our own efforts in the present may not save our republic or our civilization, but I know—as I know my Savior lives—that living as Christians is the only way Christians have to get and keep a republic or a civilization worth saving.” Altieri is right.

So it seems to me that Advent is the perfect time for each of us to reflect on how at Christmas we might present the Christ Child with the gift of our promise to live a better life as Christians, to teach truth, and to expose the evil that jeopardizes so many souls.

Thankfully, there are Catholic bishops who are not only equally aware of our need to be steadfast but who have made statements suggesting that when we decry the murder of the innocent we are driving a stake into the heart of the evil one as he prowls about in our midst.

Bishop Michael Burbidge of Arlington, Virginia, recently spoke about what it means to be pseudo-Catholic and used Biden’s abortion agenda as an example. Calling his flock into action, he wrote, “Any attempt to codify abortion, rather than to enact policies that support unborn children and mothers, should be met with peaceful, active, and staunch opposition from the Catholic faithful and all people of good will.”

Archbishop William Lori of the Archdiocese of Baltimore, Maryland, was recently elected vice president of the USCCB. In October, when he was chairman of the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops’ pro-life committee, he said:

The president is gravely wrong to continue to seek every possible avenue to facilitate abortion, instead of using his power to increase support and care to mothers in challenging situations. This single-minded extremism must end, and we implore President Biden to recognize the humanity in preborn children and the genuine life-giving care needed by women in this country. As pastors who deal daily with the tragic impacts of abortion, we know that abortion is a violent act which ends the life of preborn children and wounds untold numbers of women. The Catholic Church wishes to continue in our work with our government and leaders to protect the right to life of every human being and to ensure that pregnant and parenting mothers are fully supported in the care of their children before and after birth.

When we see statements from bishops like those mentioned here, we realize anew that Cardinal Robert Sarah’s description of gender ideology as demonic applies to the same mindset that condones acts of abortion and euthanasia. In each case, as he so wisely teaches, a rebellion against God is at the core. In other words, they represent Satan’s ultimate game plan for victory.

According to Sarah, “It is the revolt of Satan against the gift of grace. Fundamentally, I believe that Western man refuses to be saved by God’s mercy. He refuses to receive salvation, wanting to build it for himself.”

Therein lies the rub! A vivid example of such rejection of God’s mercy is reflected in a headline that reads “Without Abortion, Doctors in Texas Are Forced to Witness Horrible Outcomes.” Never mind that with abortion a child will be sliced and diced to death or chemically burned alive. No, it is all about choices, never about mercy and unselfish love.

And that is pure paganism—a total rejection of God and His laws, His intervention, and His creation. St. Paul tells us that such people do not honor Him, and thus their minds become darkened. He writes, “While they claimed to be wise, in fact they were growing so stupid that they exchanged the glory of the immortal God for an imitation, for the image of a mortal human being, or of birds, or animals, or crawling things.”

As Christians, we know that serving God is the way to overcome paganism and the evils it spawns. Let us therefore assure Christ—the babe in the manger—that we will do our best to be His witnesses, shining the light of His lifesaving truth as a beacon of hope.